the importance and the unimportance of notes

book hats

Is unimportance a word? I’m not so sure. I think I’m going to go with no, but I like it, so it can stay.

I’ve hit about 73,000 words on the work in progress, which is also the middle grade novel I started writing in March. Ugh. I can’t believe how long it’s taking. There were a few breaks to work on other projects, editing and such, but it still feels like an eternity.

The notes for the book have surpassed 45 pages. I currently have them crammed into a folder that has those things that go through the holes, kind of like a binder in folder form. This is handy because I can go in and rearrange and add into the middle if I want.

Between the sketches of things in the story, the somewhat haphazard arrangement of details (which has veered into a not-quite-linear set of thoughts), and the random bits of dialog mixed in, I’ll probably come off as a crazy person to anyone who attempts to read it.

I wrote out many of the notes before I started working on the book itself. At the beginning of a new writing project, I can’t always tell what will work the best once I really get going. I followed my notes (for the most part) to a certain point, probably about 3/4 of the way to where I am now and I realized that the next phase of the story needed two of the scenes to sort of overlap.

From there, the story climbed to this whole other level where cultures and relationship dynamics come into play, whereas in the original version, the original notes for that part of the story, didn’t have that kind of depth. The book is better because I deviated.

I guess the point is that notes should be seen as more of a guide than a task list. They offer direction if I lose my way, or in this case two directions at once, even though I didn’t see it at first. They also remind me of where my head was at when I started writing. So while they’re beneficial, they’re not everything. The story is going where it needs to go. That’s what matters.


movie: Dark Skies


A quick review today!
Description from IMDB: “As the Barret family’s peaceful suburban life is rocked by an escalating series of disturbing events, they come to learn that a terrifying and deadly force is after them.”

This movie is scary in the way that Paranormal Activity is scary, only it has more of a story and better acting, and it’s filmed like a regular movie. Mom wakes up in the middle of the night to strange and terrifying things happening in the house. The next night, same thing, and with each visit, the scares get more extreme. The situation gets worse when the family finds out what the visitors are after.

Dark Skies is awesome. It gets an A.

movie: Django Unchained

Yay! A movie post! We didn’t watch any movies the two weekends before this so that’s why I haven’t had any movie posts lately. The Netflix envelope gathered some dust.


Description from IMDB: “With the help of a German bounty hunter, a freed slave sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owner.”

The husband and I weren’t sure if we’d like this movie. It’s a Quentin Tarantino movie, which is usually a safe bet for us, but you never know what kind of weird stuff he’s going to turn out.

This movie is really good. It has the typical Tarantino elements. We have the over the top violence and the blood splatters. We have the quirkiness, which is what I like most about his movies.

Django is a likable character, but he still has some really dark moments. He’s loyal in some ways and yet he seems all too willing to forget where he came from. It is interesting to watch him evolve from a slave in chains to a full-fledged badass.

When this movie came out, people made a big deal about the use of the “N” word. Quentin (we’re on a first name basis, lol) does have a tendency to toss the word around a lot. However, in this movie, I don’t think he could’ve properly conveyed the cruelty of the southern slave culture without using it. I didn’t think it was excessive.

Django Unchained contains much ass kicking. It gets an A.

the Chicago trip in pictures

I went to Chicago this weekend! Mommy dearest was kind enough to cover the deal. Thanks, mom!

Here are some pics from the trip.




Recognize this fountain? I’ll give you a hint. Love and marriage. Love and marriage. That’s right. It’s the fountain from the opening sequence to Married with Children!


This was the coffee bar in the lobby at the hotel. How friggin’ cute is this room? I loved it and the hotel in general. It was a really nice place to stay. Mile North, I think, was the name.


These items were placed on our table at the restaurant at the top floor of Neiman Marcus. The pink stuff is this really yummy strawberry butter stuff. The tiny mug holds chicken broth. What do you do? I laughed at my mother at first because she drank the chicken broth. Later, the girl child did a google search and determined that you are supposed to drink the chicken broth. I just dipped my bread in it. Nom.


Willis Tower and assorted buildings.


I have never felt so judged by mannequins.





A pig man in Millennium Park. There were several of them painted in various, equally vibrant color schemes. Some of them had blue nipples.



The Bean. How cool is this? It was also in Millennium Park.


Standing under the bean, looking up, looks like this. I’m in this picture somewhere.


An amphitheater that looked sort of like spaceship wreckage.






very true. Sope IS Hanz best friend! I approve this message.

Pestilence Rising, the kickstarter

I apologize for the lack of movie post this week. Last weekend was crazy busy. I actually didn’t have time to watch a movie. Our Netflix envelope was highly neglected.

The good news is that the kickstarter is finally up! That took long enough, right? Here is the link if you would like to check it out. There are rewards, limited editions of the book and such.

Click HERE to make the jump to the project page.

Pestilence Rising png cover